Backing Up the Parts Tracker Data File
It is essential to back this file up at regular intervals. Computer crashes, power failure, network problems, etc, can result in your Parts Tracker data file being corrupted and you losing your data.
Parts Tracker keeps all your data (e.g. orders, parts, etc) in the following single file: C:\Program Files\Parts Tracker\PartsTrackerData4_0.mdb
To back up the Parts Tracker data file, you can use a 3rd party backup tool, or any other mechanism you currently use to backup your personal files (e.g. copying files to CD-ROM or other removable disk). You only need to copy the single data file shown above – this is the only file that contains your Parts Tracker data.
You can also use the Parts Tracker backup utility to create sequential copies of your data - see below.
Using the Backup Utility
Parts Tracker comes with a utility to backup the data file. To set it up, use the following steps:
- From the Windows Start Menu, select the "Parts Tracker Backup Utility Setup" item.
- The Parts Tracker Backup Utility window will open.
- Press the top Browse button, and select the Parts Tracker data file (C:\Program Files\Parts Tracker\PartsTrackerData4_0.mdb).
- Then, press the bottom Browse button to select a folder where you want the backup copies to be kept.
- You can then choose the maximum number of copies you wish to keep backed up. Each time the backup occurs, a new file is created up to the maximum number of copies. Then, each new backup replaces the oldest exists backup. That way, you are able to keep several historical copies as well as the latest backup copy. Note that the data file can get quite large (in excess of 10MB), so be aware of how much space you want to use for backups and set the number of backups with this in mind. If you store images of parts in your data file, it will be larger.
- Close the Backup Utility by pressing the Close button.
- After closing the Backup Utility, you need to create a scheduled task that will periodically execute the backup. Scheduled tasks is a feature of Windows itself.
- Create a new scheduled task (typically, you will find this in the Windows Control Panel, or in the My Computer window – depending on your version of Windows).
- In the Scheduled Task wizard, choose the Parts Tracker Backup Utility program in the list (if you can’t see it in the list, press the Browse button and find the file C:\Program Files\Parts Tracker\TrackerBackup.exe).
- Select a schedule (e.g. daily, weekly) and times, and save the new scheduled task. Note: in Windows XP you may be asked to enter a password. If you do not, you may get an error relating "Account Information" or "Access is Denied". The task will still be created, but you have to do the extra step below to ensure the task runs.
- Now, right-click the new scheduled task and select Properties.
- In the Properties window, find the ‘Run’ edit field (typically containing the text: C:\PROGRA~1\PARTST~1\TRACKE~1.EXE or similar), and at the end of this text, add –b (that is, a hyphen followed by a letter b ).
- In Windows XP, a username and password is required to run the task if no-one is logged in at the time. You can supply a username and password, or you can tick the Run only if logged on checkbox in the task properties window. It is recommended to tick this box because if you change your password down the track, the scheduled task will silently fail to run (and you might not realise that your backups aren't being generated).
- Then choose OK to save the new settings.
When the scheduled task runs next (based on your chosen schedule and times) it will backup the Parts Tracker data file.
Backing Up Manually
You can also just backup manually without using a scheduled task by doing the following:
- Do all the steps above up until step 6 (to tell the backup utility what to backup and where to back it up to).
- Go to your desktop and right click and choose New -> Shortcut. A Create Shortcut window will open.
- Press the Browse button and browse to: My Computer -> Local Disk -> Program Files -> Parts Tracker -> TrackerBackup.exe, or just copy-paste the following path in the box marked Type the location of the item: C:\Program Files\Parts Tracker\trackerbackup.exe.
- Click Next then click Finish.
- A shortcut to trackerbackup.exe will appear on the desktop.
- Right-click the shortcut and choose Properties.
- In the Target box you will see the text: "C:\Program Files\Parts Tracker\TrackerBackup.exe" (including the double-quotes). After the last double-quotes at the end, add a space then a hyphen then the letter b. In other words, it should now look like: "C:\Program Files\Parts Tracker\TrackerBackup.exe" -b (with the quotes before the space-hyphen-b).
- Press OK.
- Running (double-clicking) the shortcut will now cause a backup to be created.
- (Optional) You can make the backup occur everytime you start the computer by dragging the shortcut into the Start Menu, then All Programs, then Startup.